May 17 2019
I love what a small town Anchorage is. I met Lindsay a few years ago with friends at a yoga retreat in Seldovia – and we invited her to stay in our “cabin” instead of alone in her designated tent. She is super sweet and funny and we all bonded over how terrible the flies were!
Fast forward to this past year – she announced she was expecting her first baby!! When she called me about doing newborn photos I was so stoked – obviously! BUT – it turns out – it was her mom who actually found my work and wanted to book me first! I photographed another darling girl earlier in the year, and the grandma’s were friends (love it!) – And of course Lindsay was A-ok with that. Seriously you guys – word of mouth is my best referral! I 100% gift referral credits to you too!
As we chatted about what might make Lindsay’s images extra special she talked about how her wedding flowers were Peonies and her due date was in the right season for them.
Side Note: Peonies are big here in Alaska. They grow really well in south central Alaska and there are actually several local Peony farms in the area! They are beyond beautiful and such a delicate iconic flower.
I was so inspired by the deep raspberry color – and incorporated it into her entire session. I have never been a “pink” type of gal personally – but these colors were calling to me and I loved the richness and depth.
Also – are they not just the most adorable family you’ve ever seen??
On one other note – I try to keep my newborn bookings to a reasonable number – as babies arrivals are unpredictable! Even though I had my July babies nice spaced on paper, this little lady came early, and my other July babes came late – and essentially – they were all born within 24 hours of each other! I truly think there is something in the tides/water/moon cycles that influences birth… I’m sure the hospitals would agree!
May 17 2019
Let’s talk about baby photography!
Listen you guys – when clients have Pinterest boards it can be intimidating for a photographer. We know that all the images you pin are amazing. A lot of times though, we honestly aren’t sure we can recreate those things for you! People forget that Pinterest is someone’s highlight reel. The best of the best, even for those photographers! They are inspiring and beautiful – for sure! And I love me some Pinterest boards! But it adds a whole level of pressure and stress when we have to live up to someone else’s work.
When Benjamin’s amazing parents came in for their consultation mom’s cell phone rang with, no joke, the Harry Potter theme song. I immediately knew we needed to incorporate some magic. They also talked about their Viking and Nordic background – and the color green. Absolutely no blue for their boy!
Side Note: Do you know it’s super hard to find newborn props in green?! I finally found this precious green sleeper from one of my favorite vendors – Photo Muffins after searching for ages!
What I loved about this family is that while they stressed the importance of elements in their photos – they were totally open to my interpretation and vision. They kindly brought in their Harry Potter collection (including the amazing box!) and then gave me that artistic license to create images that I was confident and comfortable with.
I love being able to capture images that are meaningful as well as beautiful. All great newborn photographers can pose and wrap babies – and create gorgeous pictures. This session is extra special because in addition to creating pretty pictures – we added meaning and history to them.
I’m already planning a Harry Potter themed cake smash in a year…
Apr 05 2018
I met Sophia’s mom earlier this winter. I fell in love with their family right away. Dad was deployed at the time, and Christina was desperately looking for a birth photographer to help capture the moments of Sophia’s birth that he was going to miss.
I mean – you can’t say no to that! My lovely photographer friend Sarah Beth, Christina’s neighbor, was hoping to capture it for her, but already had her own move date and new orders for Vegas. Obviously babies have their own schedules – and with her due date after the Sarah Beth’s move date, I agreed to be her back up! I got all my paperwork in order to get base access and I was ready!
The morning of St. Patricks day I woke up to a text from Christina. She was ready to head to the hospital! And Sarah Beth was still in town – for I kid you not – one more day!!
I definitely missed out on what sounded like an amazing birth experience – lots of Irish luck! But I know it was a beautiful note for Sarah Beth to leave Alaska on, and obviously I wanted to photograph this little girl – so we got them into the studio for a quick little newborn session.
As a St Patricks day baby I had to showcase some green for her! She is a gorgeous baby girl, with a gorgeous mom and an equally adorable big brother, who I know is completely in love with her!
It’s always such a fantastic feeling to know you’re capturing memories for a family who has sacrificed so much. I know dad is heartbroken to miss these first moments with his daughter – but he will have the images to always see how tiny she was, and how much she was loved from here first moment of life.
Feb 06 2018
I get some of the most beautiful Alaskan babies in my studio! Baby Amelia is setting the bar pretty high on the cuteness scale. And she was as sweet as she is lovely!
I was so excited to photograph this little girl on my newest Burgundy flokati – and paired it with the blush and cream tones to perfectly compliment her beautiful complexion.
I also really wanted to incorporate some of my Alaskan beach driftwood into her session – so we potato sack wrapped her in the Burgundy – popped her in a basket and added the white fur – and viola! Completely Game of Thrones!! Which I’m obsessed with btw – definitely one of my favorite images from the session! She pulls off the regal look effortlessly. Shooting with driftwood is definitely my new obsession. It has the most amazing texture to photograph!
Her big sister was also a dream – I mean, you never know how siblings are going to behave. My older daughter was NOT a fan of her new baby sister when she arrived home (‘when is she going back?’ was her first question… um… she’s not… sorry sis – better get used to it!)… so getting to capture a few snuggles and love from big sis is always the icing on the cake! As a mom, the rare snuggle pictures are some of my most cherished memories! It helps to look at them on days when they are fighting like cats and dogs…
So enjoy a few of her session images. She was all kinds of squishy, perfect baby girl goodness!
Aug 29 2017
Could this setup say Alaska baby any louder?
We’ve been spending the summer weekends in Whittier, Ak this year – and I am SO obsessed with beach combing! Alaska doesn’t have a lot of sweet sandy beaches – we have more of the rocky beaches, but there are some fantastic places to find driftwood – and really beautiful driftwood at that! So obviously – I thought – I MUST use this for some sessions! I love the texture an the lines – and thought it would compliment a sweet little babe perfectly.
The shells were collected in Seldovia, off MacDonald Spit, where there is a rare and lovely sand beach (because shells just get ground to dust on rocky beaches) and I went with lovely gray and white neutral nautical colors. I really didn’t want it to look busy – just textured and interesting. And so easy to compliment bean bag shots – with those same neutral colors.
Also – we’ve had such a rainy/wet summer here in Southcentral Alaska – those neutral, subtle colors just seemed to fit the mood.
And sweet baby Hollyn was a dream to photograph. She was sleepy and squishy and all things a baby girl should be. And mom looked freaking amazing – no one would know she had a baby a week ago!
May 26 2017
So many moms ask me about the magic I use to get their little ones to sleep. And I get it. When I was a new mom I would have killed for some of the tips and tricks that I have learned over the years. I was definitely NOT a baby whisperer when I started out! It has taken lots of practice, and lots of tears (both babies and my own) to find a few time-tested ways to soothe, calm, and get babies to sleep.
So here’s my gift to you moms. A few of my secrets to (hopefully) help you on your journey. Every baby is different, so just remember, don’t give up! You will find the things that your babe likes the best.
- Breathe. This seems obvious – but have you ever noticed how when you are tense you hold your breath? You do. Notice it. This I’ve learned from my yoga teachings, but it’s fundamental. Your body can’t relax when you’re holding your breath – so let it out. And then let in a big gulp of fresh oxygen. Flood your blood with that and feel your whole body loosen up. Your baby knows when you’re tense – and it makes them tense. I know the crying can make you crazy – but sometimes you just need to take a big deep breath. PS – physiologically there is some crazy amazing stuff that happens to your body and your brain when you take full slow breaths. Just give it a try!
- Babies need to eat. I know nursing can be brutal. BELIEVE me, I know. I used to want to cry every time I needed to feed my first born because it was so freaking hard and painful. I promise it gets easier – but you know what – there is no shame in feeding your baby however you need to feed them. But 9 times out of 10 – when they cry, it’s because they want to eat. Or suck. Which leads us into point #3
- Paci! Babies calm themselves by sucking. Even if they’re not eating – they will use you as a human pacifier. So… if you would like to take a shower/nap/eat a sandwich without a baby attached to your boob – maybe give those little paci’s a try. I promise – they will not destroy your babies ability to eat. I PROMISE. Baby has the hiccups? Paci will help those go away too!
- Speaking of eating sandwiches… momma – you gotta eat. Your body will stop producing milk if you aren’t intaking enough calories and staying hydrated. (This is why I always have snacks for moms at the studio!!) And yes – this happened to me with my first, and again with my second during a hot summer when I wasn’t staying hydrated! Voice of experience here…
- Keep it Hot. When you walk into my studio for a newborn shoot it’s like a sauna. Crank up that heat guys! Babies wanna be warm! although do be careful that if you are cranking your heat your not bundling them too. Warm temps are great when they are just in their diaper or a onesie, but they can get overheated if you have them bundled AND your heat cranked. I always pre-heat by space with a heating pad, so that I’m not popping baby onto a cold space with bare skin! Just remember – do NOT leave them on a heating pad or touching it – as it can burn their delicate skin!
- Vibration. Moms figure out pretty quickly that babies love to be jiggled. We bounce our feet when we hold them – or we rock in a rocker. But it gets exhausting! There are some amazing products that do the jiggle for you. Be it an actual bouncy chair or swing – you can also find battery operated gadgets from Amazon (my go to shopping site as a new mom) like my lulla-vibe that can be used anywhere. They’re fantastic!
- Sound. My babes never sleep in silence. We either have a white noise app of some type or an actual fan/heater blowing for noise
- Swaddle! Whenever I have a fussy or uncomfortable baby that doesn’t want to sleep I find that a nice snug wrap tends to do the trick. The tighter the better! Remember – they were all cramped and stuffed in your uterus for 9 months. They aren’t used to having space around them!
- The limp limb test. Your baby is asleep, right? And you try to move (because your entire body has fallen asleep from holding them in some crazy awkward position) and immediately they wake. Crap! Back to square one… Use the limp limb test to see if they are truly deep enough in their sleep to move. Simply lift and arm or leg slightly and let it go. If it falls without resistance, they are ready to be moved!
And if you just need a break – bring your baby to me! Moms always get to relax while I shoot – so you can count on a few hours off, with a break here and there to feed baby, of course. I’ll even change your babies diapers. I know you need a break ladies.
And remember to schedule your newborn sessions early though, because the studio fills up! I always recommend coming in for a consult a few months before your due date – to chat about colors, props and ideas!
May 22 2017
Newborn photography is a tough gig for shop-a-holics. We need ALL the colors! And all the props… My current obsession is wool curls. I’m a sucker for textures with babies, and these are so soft and lovely! I love the way the light hits them, and how the dyeing process creates such beautiful variations of color. I’ve been hand dyeing lots of them, but so far the purple is definitely my favorite.
Thankfully I’m not too shabby at fiber art. And I found a super sweet farmer in Lebanon, Oregon that I’ve been loading up on wool from. LOTS more colors to come!
Side Note: bonus to having the downtown anchorage studio space – LOTS more room for props! Although I think Shalem is going to have a panic attack if I bring in too much more… we are working on building out some storage space, but at the moment it kind of looks like a second hand store in here. Sorry guys!
Baby Emica had the most lovely skin tone – and all that dark hair! Purple was the perfect compliment to her dark features. Baby girl was a big fan of those wool curls and snuggled right in. I was able to get lovely macro images of all her precious little features – eyelashes, tiny fingers and toes and those sweet little baby lips!
She was a sweet, tiny little thing and she was a dream to photograph! So beautiful!
Mar 15 2017
I try my best to schedule baby milestone first year sessions at the previous shoot. Because we’re busy moms – we forget about this stuff… So when we scheduled Logan’s 6 month shoot, after his newborn session, I had no idea it would end up falling on Iditarod start day.
For those of you familiar with the Alaska Iditarod, it’s a super fun event! We love taking our kids when it’s not super cold – and the race starts just behind the studio. Which is great, if you’re at the studio early, and have your parking situated.
I however, completely forgot that it was Iditarod start day, until I was headed to the studio and the traffic was a nightmare. I realized my mistake when I was informed that the parking garage where our studio is located was completely full. Yikes! So I’m driving around trying to find parking, along with all of Anchorage, for another half an hour. Making me wretchedly late!
So of course, I’m frazzled and flustered and feeling just a little out of my element. And somehow Logan’s family was fully aware that it was the Iditarod start so they were well prepared and on time!
But fear not – this family is the coolest bunch of cucumbers. They are super laid back – chill and go with the flow. I quickly recovered my chill, just by being in the same room with them for 5 minutes – and we had a super fun little session.
Logan was probably the smiliest 6 month old I have ever encountered. So many babes have the stranger danger factor going by 6 months old – and are super interested in the camera, so they want to study it, and not smile. And certainly Logan was curious about the camera, but he was also SUCH a happy guy. I got some adorable grins.
He is also sitting up like a champ! The mid-year milestone shoot is really more about baby’s development – and sitting is definitely what we want to capture.
Feb 10 2017
Having your birthday during the winter months in Alaska is tough. It’s dark, it’s cold – the weather is unpredictable… Good thing we’ve got a warm and cheerful studio – amiright?!
One of the things I love about doing a grow up plan with babies is to incorporate things from the newborn session into the milestone and 1 year sessions. In this case, dad had some beautiful furs that I asked them to bring back. You can check out the deliciousness from Gabe’s newborn session here
1 Year sessions also capture so much personality in kids. Gabe is already walking with assistance, so he was checking out everything in our studio – and this was by far his favorite thing – just a yellow chair! Kids are easy to please… He found this rolling chair and pushed it right over to where we were shooting – basically, giving us this look – ‘hey guys – I’m ready for my close up!’ – and it matched his plaid shirt perfectly!
For those who don’t follow me on FB, a close second to my obsession with baby toes is my love of cake. I mean – who DOESN’T love cake?
Even though I don’t usually get to EAT any of the cake in a cake smash, I thoroughly enjoy watching babes get their mess on with some frosting. I guess I could snatch a bite off the floor after the babes are done, but thus far I haven’t been QUITE that desperate for a bit. I wouldn’t put it past me to do at some point in the future though.
Don’t judge me.
Also – little known fact – most kids actually don’t like cake. Or at least – they don’t like eating it. 4 out of 5 – 1 year olds really just want to play with it. Which is cool – they make a fabulous and fun mess and in general, have a fab time. But really – not much cake gets consumed.
And Gabe was no exception. I think he took one taste of his frosting – and that was about it. But boy did he LOVE making a mess! Like, LOVED it.
Jan 27 2017
It is so important as an artist to always be learning, growing and practicing. Baby photography is no different from any other art form – and the more we practice, the better we get! So whenever I have a new technique, pose, wrap or in this case, some new props and colors, I love to put out a model call to get into my groove.
Sweet baby Sarah came into the studio at 1 week old to let me dust off my holiday vacation rust, and photograph my new plum backdrop.
I fell in love with this color combo – the deep rich purples and bright spring greens – I’m a little bit obsessed with it.
Getting settled into the studio, like settling into any new space has its challenges – so having a few babes come in to let me practice the lighting and flow is a dream! But I’m loving having so much more space, and being in downtown Anchorage is so fantastic!
Now all I need is more storage for my bazillion props and blankets, headbands and hats.
(see what I did there…)
The toes! Oh those baby toes! I don’t know what it is about newborn feet but i always catch the cutest little detail shots of their tiny features.
And speaking of baby details – those squishy lips and squishy cheeks! Her little face is just so precious!